Job Shadowing: Memòria de l’estada a Budapest

Job Shadowing took place in Budapest 5-11 October 2015. Aina Trias Roca and C Gabriel Comas i Ribas prepared presentation about they memories.

All presentation you can find here: Memòria Budapest final (Presentation is in Spanish)




CITA Project: Job Shadowing

CITA project:

  • brings teachers from three countries together
  • helps us learn from each other by sharing our experiences and views
  • have a wonderful and unforgettable time together
  • build close relationships with colleagues and students

You can read more about it in presentation CITA project prepared by Aina Trias Roca (Spain) and Enikő Siró (Hungary).

Job shadowing Budapest-Mallorca

English Language Teacher Associations play an important role in promoting the professional development of teachers in diverse countries and regions. Within the framework of the EU funded Erasmus+CITA (Cooperation and Innovation in Teachers’ Associations) project teachers’ associations from Hungary (IATEFL-H), Lithuania (LAKMA) and the Balearic Islands (APABAL) brought teachers from 3 countries together  to help us learn from each other by sharing our experiences and views. The project offered an excellent opportunity to learn about ourselves as teachers, as personalities and as our countries’ representatives by job shadowing.

 I had a partner job-shadower, Aina Trias Roca from CEIP Gabriel Comas i Ribas, Esporles, Mallorca, Spain. Aina is an experienced, enthusiastic teacher who is respected by students, parents and colleagues at her school, in the local community and among professionals of APABAL, the teachers’ association.

 Our job-shadowing work had two phases:

The first one took place in Karinthy Frigyes Hungarian-English Bilingual Primary School in Budapest, Hungary between 4-10 October in 2015. In this phase Aina visited my English and Civilization lessons, observed how my 13-year-old students are preparing for the Cambridge PET exam, how we share work with native teachers from the USA, participated in school activities, and introduced Mallorca, her school and students, Mallorcan traditions and festivals to me and my students. She observed my colleagues’ CLIL lessons and the native teachers’ English lessons in lower primary classes as well and learnt about features, benefits and challenges of bilingual education and content-language integrated learning, teaching a foreign language to young learners. She also got insight into the Hungarian educational system and gained experience of professional issues in workshops, talks and informal chats on the 25th conference of IATEFL-H.  During our free afternoons, we visited some famous sights of Budapest and tasted home-made Hungarian food.

In the second phase I travelled to Esporles, Mallorca and spent a week between 7-13 February in 2016 at Aina’s school in CEIP Gabriel Comas i Ribas. Esporles is a Catalan village with about 5,000 inhabitants in the Tramuntana mountains, about 15 km north of the capital, Palma de Mallorca. The school has 450 pupils from the age of 4 to 12 as it is a kindergarten as well. Some of them come to school from the neighbouring villages like Banyalbufar by the school bus everyday. The school is bilingual as they teach Catalan and Spanish but none of the school subjects are taught in the second language (which is Spanish for them). Pupils start studying English at the age of four and have 30 minute long lessons twice a week. From the age of 6 they have 3 lessons, 30 or 45 minutes long depending on their age. Methodology and materials are adequate for their age, motivating for all age groups. Each class has a class teacher who teaches all subjects for them; only English, PE and Music are taught by specialised teachers. The lessons start at 9am and finish at 4.15. Pupils have lessons from 9-10, 10-11 then 30 minutes break, 11.30-12, 12-12.30 which is followed by a 75-minute long lunchbreak when pupils can have lunch at school or go home to eat. The afternoon lessons are from 14.45-15.30 and 15.30-16.15. Having this type of system and timetable, I didn’t see children to get as tired as our students do.

During my job-shadowing week I observed lessons both in the kindergarten and in the primary school. I was involved and did peer teaching in the primary school part. I also taught some language games matching the course material and had a presentation about Hungary, Budapest, Lake Balaton, my school and festivals for the 6th graders in all the 3 classes. Pupils put questions about our traditions and everyday life. Our interaction was a motivating example for them to study English and use the language as a tool to get information about a very different country and contact people from other parts of Europe.

I participated in school activities like Pancake day where pupils learnt a rhyme for how to make a pancake followed by their teacher’s demonstration. The following day, the pancake race was organised then eating pancakes filled by the teachers (us) and practising how to ask for something.

I also learnt about the educational system of Mallorca, requirements for teachers and students, about the curriculum, 3 terms and holidays in the school year and got an insight into a staff meeting and the English teachers’ weekly planning session.

The week ended with participating in the conference organized by APABAL, the English Teachers’ Association of the Ballearic Islands and giving a presentation about the experiences gained during job-shadowing in the CITA project.

During the project we shared our experience, discussed and compared methodological issues, developed and shared materials fitting to our teaching situations. By learning about each others’ culture including everyday life, history, famous sights, traditions, food etc. we had the opportunity to compare and contrast the two countries and widen our horizon. I will include the acquired knowledge not only in the English lessons but in Civilization, too. The cultural activities I was really fond of eg. Jaia Corema’s tradition during Lent are now parts of my lessons to make certain topics more colourful, interesting or thought-provoking.

I found job-shadowing a very meaningful project where both teachers and students gain a lot by learning about other cultures while sharing the same language.

I also thought about action planning how we could make benefits of the project in the long run. On one hand, on a professional level by further cooperation among the teachers’ associations, joint projects between the schools or classes involved in the job shadowing process and between the two of us by sharing ideas and materials we found useful via e-mail. On the other hand, on a personal level. I think the two weeks of the project is a beginning of a lifelong friendship. We keep in touch and planning further meetings on the family level.

Concerning dissemination of this experience, I have already had some opportunities like the APABAL Convention in Palma (12 February 2016), the Creative Café organized by IATEFL (4March 2016) and informal talks with colleagues and friends.

From a personal point of view Aina was not only a professional teacher, expert on her field  and a good colleague but a fantastic host who helped me a lot to discover beautiful parts of the island, learn about its history and traditions, understand Mallorcan way of life, taste Mallorcan food and get lifelong memories of my stay.

It was a fantastic experience and feeling to meet new colleagues from different countries with different backgrounds and culture and share the same language, thinking and aims both as teachers and humans.

Thank you for this wonderful opportunity.

Siró Enikő, IATEFL-Hungary

Job Shadowing Vilnius

Between the 12th and 18th of October I spent a wonderful week in Vilnius as part of the CITA teacher exchange project with my host teacher Grazina. As the 2015-10-15 14.42.17primary aim of the project is to get to know each other’s schools and the education system I spent my mornings at Karolinskiu Gymnasium, where I recei
ved a warm welcome both from the teachers and students. It was very interesting and useful to see a CLIL project done in a regular classroom, to find out how students work on it in groups, and to get to know more about the benefits and challenges of such a project. I also had the opportunity to give a short presentation about my school in some of Grazina’s classes, I was really happy to meet her students and really enjoyed talking to them. It is a memorable experience for me.

2015-10-15 13.30.55On Friday and Saturday I took part in the LAKMA conference at the Pedagogical University. The topic of the conference was CLIL and there were several plenaries and smaller presentations on the theory behind CLIC and using it in various ways for language teaching. So managed to collect great ideas that I will be able to use in my teaching.

Besides visiting the school, I manged also to go sightseeing in Vilnius and Trakai. I was really impressed by the beauty of both places and it was fascinating to see how fast the country is developing, how many new buildings are built.

Gulyásné Pusztai, Réka English teacher

Radnóti Gimnázium, Budapest

Job Shadowing Budapest

On the 4th of October, 2015  I came to Budapest with a lot of expectations and willingness to get most out of the project CITA. The main idea of the project is to bring teachers from three countries (Lithuania, Spain and Hungary) together and help us learn from each other by sharing our experiences and views.

In Hungary I spent one week and had a chan2015-10-09 18.49.52.jpgce to build close relationship with Reka, an English teacher from Radnoti gymnasium whose lessons I was observing. The gymnasium is considered to be the second best gymnasium in Budapest. My responsibilities during the stay were to observe Reka’s lessons, participate in school activities, learn about educational system of the host family and see as much as I can of Hungary. The following week a Hungarian teacher came up to Lithuania and in my school we had a CLIL lesson on Maths including English, there were three integrated Maths and English lessons per week and students had to conduct a research as well as present statistical analysis by making power point presentations. Having done the CLIL project a Maths teacher and we (English teachers) came up to the following conclusions. The benefits of CLIL are students develop communication and 20151007_121129 (1)digital competences, it is motivating for the students, bilingualism is promoted; the projects like this prepare students for future studies and working life. The challenges of CLIL are flexibility of curriculum and lack of CLIL teacher training programmes. However, advantages outweigh disadvantages and it is worth doing CLIL lessons.

20151009_144615.jpgOn the 11th of October, 2015 I left Hungary on a high note visiting the 25th annual conference of IATEFL-Hungary. T his CITA project gave us not only  an exciting opportunity to get to know better with colleagues and students from different countries  but also motivated and inspired us to try new things and do our best during lessons. I hope we will have some common projects in the near future.


An English teacher Gražina Morozovienė

Vilniaus Karoliniskiu gymnasium



Teachers feel very comfortable while working in their own environment without questioning what life can be outside the walls of their classroom, school or even country. Job shadowing, a part of a CITA project, gave me a priceless chance to plunge into a different educational system for a week and get the greatest experience on both professional and personal levels.

First of all, job shadowing has an array of professional development aspects. Getting acquainted with a different educational system, learning the specifics about the host’s job and being a part of it has an immense value. Being able to see everything from inside, compare the differences and taking the best ideas will result in changing something in the school back home. The main differences are working with a language assistant, the length of the lessons, the break system, the number of students in class, the way and frequency of informing parents, students addressing teachers and many more. In addition, observing lessons of three different teachers gave a deeper insight into various methodological approaches with a chance of getting acquainted with student’s evaluation system. In general, I observed a number of lessons: Crisis in Medieval Ages – a CLIL lesson by Apolonia, Gothic architecture in which students made their presentations about the magnificent Cathedral of Palma, Film Analysis “Freedom Writers”, Job sectors by a host teacher Apolonia,  Reading comprehension in a mixed ability class and Horror story writing with native English speakers by Maite, and Unsolved Mysteries by Carmen. While observing different teachers giving various lessons to diverse students made me grow as a teacher by learning new strategies and approaches towards students and the subject itself. Moreover, I gave some lessons myself. Probably the most interesting one was Exploring Lithuania, where students got acquainted with the fascinating facts about my country while watching the presentation and some short films and filling in the crosswords and questionnaires to check how much they had learnt. Another lesson was Brief History of Lithuania as Apolonia asked for one for her CLIL classes and Life and Traditions of MBG (Mykolas Biržiška Gymnasium), which was a great success among students wishing to participate in an exchange programme.

On a personal level, travelling to a diverse country, exploring its culture and meeting the people is unforgettable involvement allowing to broaden the horizons, make new friends and gain a great deal of  knowledge about various aspects of life, in particular, history of the country, the most famous sights, food, relationships and customs.

On the other hand, job shadowing provides several challenges such as planning lessons in advance without knowing the audience except the fact that there will be 25-30 students in class of mixed language levels. The issue arises what and how to prepare for the lesson in order to attract students’ attention and get them interested in the subject. Yet, if most of the job is done beforehand and the teacher is flexible and tends to be spontaneous these challenges can be overcome easily.

All things considered, after spending  a week in a different educational system and utterly strange environment, after meeting a wealth of various people and being shown around  I have realised how elated I am to have been chosen to participate in this project.  Having taken the best of the observations made, I can improve my performance as a teacher and a person. Despite some minor challenges the job shadowing might have, it definitely is a beneficial experience I would plunge into once again if offered without any hesitation.

 My special thanks to LAKMA board for giving a chance to take part in the project.

Lina Morkūnienė

Job Shadowings: Budapest, Palma and Vilnius

As part of the CITA project some job shadowings will take place during the months of September and October 2015.

A CLIL teacher and an English teacher from each country will have the chance to spend a week with a colleague from another country getting familiar with their educational systems and teaching practices. They will be able to experience peer teaching and daily life in a foreign school by the hand of one of their teachers.

If you want to take part in this very exciting experience, please get in touch with your association.